Well, not quite as happy for me since I lost a major executive search…that really surprised me. This particular client was in financial distress many years ago. They asked me to find a top notch CEO, which I did, and he completely turned the ship around. One of my best placements…ever.
So when he left after five years, I was pretty certain the client would select me to backfill the role. Nope. After several months of delays, they picked a different Executive Recruiter. What? Fifteen years I have owned this business and I have never, ever been caught so off guard. But it reminded me something important my Dad taught me growing up, and I thought I would share it with you.
Anyone Can Win: It’s How You Lose that Defines Your Character – One of the best lessons my Daddy ever taught me. Who doesn’t like to win? We all do! Anybody can win. It’s how you handle LOSING that defines your character. My response to the client after getting the bad news? “I’m a big fan of the company. If the other Recruiter does not work out, I would love to help. Make no mistake, I’ll be rooting for you!” Why? Because losing graciously is the best option. The only option. Some of you are thinking, “Tell them to go pound sand and thank them for their completely lack of loyalty.” Being negative or nasty does not change anything. There is absolutely no benefit to being ugly. I have a limited amount of time and energy, so I choose to focus on people that WANT to be on my bus. Let’s look at another example: Candidates that don’t get a job offer. Do they say, “Wow, I need to improve my interview skills” or “Probably was not the right culture fit”? Oh hell no! Their feedback is that the company sucks, the hiring manager sucks, and my personal favorite, “It’s their loss.” Bahahahaha! All that says is you are NOT an “A” player. That is how “B” players react. As someone once said, “We have to fail so we can practice being brave.”
Relationships Trump Talent – Trust me, as someone that is immersed in the casino space, I know this better than anyone. How else do you explain the knuckleheads that just keeping job…after…job…after job. They embezzle. They have inappropriate relationships with staff members. They abuse alcoholic and drugs. But they always have a friend that hires them…again. On the Executive Recruiter side I have seen the worst of the worst. Recruiters that take clients to Strip Clubs, send them on Caribbean Cruises and take cash bribes. My Dad raised me to be a person of integrity. I’ll be cleaning ashtrays at Caesars Palace before I do anything that impugns my integrity.
Son, They Will Get What’s Comin’ to ‘Em – Here is something else my Dad taught me, Karma is VERY real. He would say, “Son, they will get what’ comin’ to ‘em. No need for you to help.” And it’s true. If someone treats you poorly, they are probably treating everyone poorly. Eventually they get instant Karma. Fired, terminated, run out of town. I can name a dozen guys that never worked again. When you forgive someone for slighting you, the person you are setting free…is you. Remember, there is only one judge: God. As Mother Teresa says, “It’s between them and God; it was never between you and them anyway.”
Everything Happens for a Reason – I’m not here to preach, however you believe in God…or you don’t. If you are a Believer, you know there is a master plan and everything happens for a reason. If not, then everything is just a random series of events in your life. Sometimes we don’t understand why bad things happen to us. There does not seem to be a legitimate reason. It’s not fair! Let me give you an example. A couple years back I met with the Tribal Council at a big casino. They wanted me to place a new CEO for them. Thought the meeting went really well, however they selected another Recruiter for the CEO search. Gosh darn it! Obviously I was disappointed, however I found out the Recruiter that got that search spent 12 months on it and they never hired anyone. He did not get paid a dime. Sometimes losing is way better than winning.